WSMH FOX 66 on Facebook WSMH FOX 66 Twitter WSMH FOX 66 RSS Feed WSMH FOX 66 Mailing List
 

FOX 66 News at Ten

WSMH FOX 66 :: News - News at Ten - Former 'thugs' hope to revitalize Flint
Former 'thugs' hope to revitalize Flint

A glimpse inside the world of crime, in one of the most violent cities in the nation. Three men who know first-hand the dangers these streets bring, have returned to their city, hoping to keep others from walking their same path.


Some may argue the city of Flint lies in ruins. The days of flourishing and bustling neighborhoods have disappeared and the violence that has taken over gives the city a black eye.


"It's a damper on the community, but we have to build it back up and put it back to where it's been," says city resident Glam Diva.


Is Flint a lost cause? Or is there a glimmer of light through the darkness?


Meet Timothy Abdul-Matin, Leon El-Alamin, and Roy Fields. Three self-proclaimed former street thugs. They were once a part of the problem here. Now they're fighting the front lines for the solution.


They've created the 3 R's organization, which stands for reform, refine, and rebuild.


They're tackling some of the biggest issues in urban America, violence and crime by using their street knowledge and combined 25 years behind bars to nip the problem.


Leon El-Alamin, formerly Leon Wilson used to fight for what he calls "street fame."


He has the wounds to prove it.


The former street hustler was shot in the head by a couple of guys he thought were his friends, once he finally earned that fame.


He would go on to spend 9 years in prison for gun and drug charges.


"When you're desperate, it'll lead you to do anything, and that's what I think it is," says El-Alamin.


Timothy Abdul-Matin, formerly known as Timothy Miller, also fell into a life of crime.


He spent 10 years behind bars for gun charges and an armed robbery.


While locked up, his mother, grandmother, grandfather and many other family members passed away.


"If you live in the wrong environment, you're going to ultimately adapt to your environment, it's all about adapting and adjusting, whether it's wrong or right, these are the things that's going on, it's just going to happen," says Abdul-Matin.


Roy Fields was a stand-out football player in high school, earning a scholarship to play at Northwood University. But he got mixed up with guns and drugs and ended up in the slammer for six years.


Now back in their community, they insist they're devoted to serving it, using their lives to keep others on the straight and narrow.


So, how can former criminals be so dedicated to solving our crime problem?


"The psychological build of a person now a days is so far gone, it just isn't right, and it ties into the things we see around our neighborhood. It is always going to be hard, but you've got to give yourself that opportunity, and that's 3 R's," says Fields. 




Copyright 2013 WNEM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

Former 'thugs' hope to revitalize Flint

Friday, November 8 2013, 09:32 AM EST

National News Headlines

Ohio man arrested after daughter's decomposing body found in crib, police to probe girl's 2013 death
Police say someone servicing television equipment found a young girl's badly decomposed body in a crib at a northeast Ohio apartment, and her father was arrested.

Authorities hunt men who planted Confederate flags around historic Atlanta church
Authorities were searching late Thursday for two men caught on surveillance video placing Confederate battle flags around the Atlanta church where Martin Luther King Jr. once preached.

Archaeological dig returns to Colonial battleground that produced trove of artifacts
An archaeological project has returned to an artifact-rich state park in the southern Adirondacks on what was once the focal point of the warring British and French empires more than 250 years ago.

California Guard joins fight as several blazes thrust Northern California into wildfire season
Triple-digit temperatures and gusty winds thrust Northern California into full-fledged wildfire season with several new blazes flaring up, forcing hundreds of people from their homes.

Survivor recalls horrific Montana shooting to relatives, unaware parents were killed by gunman
Bullets whizzed past a woman's head as she fled from an 18-year-old gunman who had posed as a stranded motorist to convince her family to help him on the roadside of a Montana Indian reservation, the woman recounted to relatives.

Maryland gov announces plan to close worn down Baltimore detention center
Maryland's governor announced plans Thursday to immediately shut down Baltimore's state-run jail, where inmates and guards ran a criminal conspiracy inside vermin-infested, 19th-century walls and thwarted decades of attempted reforms.

Federal judge considers structured release for some charged with trying to join terror groups
U.S. District Judge Michael Davis had seen this in his courtroom before — a young Somali-American who hadn't previously been a troublemaker was now accused of conspiring to leave the U.S. and join the Islamic State group.

Ohio State marching band song mocked Holocaust victims
Ohio State University said on Thursday an unofficial marching band song that pokes fun at Holocaust victims is the type of thing the school is trying eradicate from its program.

Texas trooper's boss says there was no reason to pull over Sandra Bland
The top boss over the Texas trooper who arrested Sandra Bland said there was reason to pull her over for failing to signal a lane change and told lawmakers Thursday that the trooper remains on the state payroll because the investigation is still playing out.

Great white shark sighting ends man's marathon swim in San Francisco Bay
A California man’s goal to swim from the Golden Gate Bridge to the Farallon Islands was thwarted on Thursday when a great white shark was spotted near his finishing mark.

News at Ten Stories

Advertise with us!
IE6 Float Fix